ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What is Wrong With the Education System?

Updated on February 11, 2013

Faults of the Education System - An Introduction

There is a raging debate going on at the moment. People are so serious about getting their point of view across that they have ranted their opinions on several websites. The debate centres on the validity of an Einstein quote. You have one group that vehemently claims that the quote is most definitely something that Einstein said, and then you have the other group that says there is no way Einstein would have said something so soppy and commercial.

I only bring this up because this article is based on this quote, and normally I like to credit the person, if I am using something they have taken the time to conjure up. So with caution, and only because no one has given me an alternative, I will credit Einstein with saying: “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” In a way I could just leave my article there and not write another word, as this quote sums up our education system to the 'T'. It pains me to think of the amount of children who were, are and will be damaged by an education system that does not cater to their needs. Reflecting back on my 20 years of teaching, it pains me even more, to think of how many children I didn't give the right aid to, because I did not know any better.

This, maybe-maybe-not Einstein quote has been picked up by many educationists, satirists and cartoonists, mainly because the education system has a lot of disgruntled customers at the moment. One of my favourite interpretations is this one presented below:



It appeals to me because it sums up the standardised assessment procedure in a few words. What saddens me, is that I can tell you right now that there are millions of children, worldwide, that feel just like that fish, dog, seal, penguin and/or elephant in this cartoon. They are given tasks and assessments to do, everyday, that are just too daunting to even consider. Sure the monkey and bird may be happy, but the point of education should be to make everyone happy (besides if you think about it the bird will soon also be unhappy too, when he is penalised for cheating, because he will more than likely choose to fly to the top of the tree instead of climbing it). Now, because I believe that all students should have a fair chance, let's turn things around for the fish, seal and penguin and place them at an advantage. Consider this: what if that test had been: 'Everybody must swim across the lake'? Would those three not have excelled then? Precisely! This goes to show that everybody has the ability to shine if they are presented with the correct educational environment. We have had hundreds of years where the education system has blamed our children for not achieving, when maybe we should rather be blaming the education system for our children not achieving.

The current education system caters for a few, and if your child does not have the learning style that the education system caters for, then they are labeled as being learning impaired, ADD, ADHD, dyslexic, lazy, disinterested, a non-performer and I could go on and on.

Now, before you get your knickers all in a knot, and start emailing me proof of the existence of the above mentioned disorders, as a remedial therapist, I am very aware that dyslexia, apraxia etc. are very real disorders, but on the other hand I also firmly believe that we as educators have simply not found the correct way to present information to people with these learning barriers. I really do believe that there will come a time when someone, somewhere will find the way that these brains process information and then their true learning will begin.

The problem we are faced with at the moment is that, unfortunately, until education authorities are willing to admit that everybody's brains process and assimilates information differently, and drives that into their policies; education will continue to fail children all over the world for many reasons.

So why write this article? Seeing as I am a teacher, you would be very right to think that it is pretty much like biting the hand that feeds. You could also accuse me of being a hypocrite, as I work at upholding the policies and laws of a system that I am hugely critical of. I would completely understand your reservations. But I am also a parent, and as a parent of a child that is exposed to this system, I have a real vested interest in trying to drive change. Not only that, as an educator that now knows that there is a better way forward for the wards in her care, I feel that it is my duty to speak out on their behalf and work at exacting change in this outdated and largely defunct system. I live by the saying, 'all that is required for evil (or our current education model) to prevail, is for good men to sit by and do nothing'.

However, at the same time, I do not believe in posing problems just for the sake of ranting and raving. If I am to present a problem to you then it means that somewhere in the deep, dark crevices of my brain I have firm solutions in place, for these problems. In saying that though, I am also a realist, and I know that changing such an entrenched institution is a near to impossible task. First of all, it means changing the mindset of millions of people; people who are by nature very resistant to change, and people that have invested a large portion of their lives driving this system. Second, I also know that humankind can become completely unbalanced when faced with quick, radical changes that they are not really ready for. Third, I am also very aware of the costs that are involved when implementing changes at governmental level, and because of this governments are very anti any type of radical changes, besides that, the government has a huge stake in the education system, they like the education system just the way it is. But, and this is a big but, this doesn't mean that people shouldn't be enlightened to the problems, and it doesn't mean that we should just leave things the way that they are.

Parents quite often feel powerless, when it comes to their child's education. Even as an educator I have felt that way about my own child at times, but there are things that you as a parent can do for your child, right now, to make sure that they get the best out of their education or should I say things that you can do to ensure that your child actually does get an education.

I'll end my article off with quotes from three very famous men. Chew on the quotes for a while, and you will see that these men made a success of their lives not because of their education but despite of it.

Albert Einstein said [(1879 – 1955) and by the way he definitely did say this], "School failed me, and I failed the school. It bored me. The teachers behaved like Feldwebel (sergeants). I wanted to learn what I wanted to know, but they wanted me to learn for the exam. What I hated most was the competitive system there, and especially sports. Because of this, I wasn't worth anything, and several times they suggested I leave. This was a Catholic School in Munich. I felt that my thirst for knowledge was being strangled by my teachers; grades were their only measurement. How can a teacher understand youth with such a system? . . . from the age of twelve I began to suspect authority and distrust teachers'

Mark Twain (1835 – 1910) said: 'I never let my schooling get in the way of my education.'

Thomas Edison said (1847 – 1931)My teachers say I’m addlebrained . . . my father thought I was stupid, and I almost decided I must be a dunce.”

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)